For years women, children and the elderly have been advised to increase their intake of Calcium through supplements and dairy foods.
That statement was not accompanied by a warning that unless you provide your body with the mechanism to transport that calcium into your bones, it will form calcium deposits.
The Problem with Calcium
Calcium buildup in soft tissues can cause medical problems.
Calcium can accumulate in the arterial plaque that develops after an injury to the vessel wall.
Normal deposition of calcium occurs in only two places: bone and teeth.
Abnormal deposits of calcium occurs in multiple tissues including:
the inner lining of the arteries (the intima) where atherosclerotic plaque accrues;
the middle muscle layer of arteries (smooth muscle calcification);
the heart valves, especially the aortic valve causing aortic stenosis
To The Rescue
Vitamin K2 appears to be the most important factor in steering calcium into the bone and away from heart valves and the arterial system.
Vitamin K is absolutely essential for regulating calcium balance in the body. A deficiency of vitamin K status causes brittle bones and a vascular system that hardens to a state of poor functionality.
Based on the plethora of studies published in 2008, vitamins K2 and K3 have also emerged as intriguing agents in both cancer prevention and treatment.
Vitamin K2 has been shown to induce apoptosis (cell destruction) in leukemia cells in vitro.3
In nature, vitamin K is found in two forms: vitamin K1, which occurs in leafy green vegetables; and vitamin K2, which exists in organ meats, egg yolks, dairy products, and particularly in fermented products such as cheese and curd.
While some ingested K1 is converted to K2 in the body, significant benefits occur when vitamin K2 itself is supplemented.4
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References:1. Beulens JW, Bots ML, Atsma F, et al. High dietary menaquinone intake is associated with reduced coronary calcification. Atherosclerosis. 2008 Jul 19. 2. Schurgers LJ , Spronk HM , Soute BA, Schiffers PM, DeMey JG, Vermeer C . Regression of warfarin-induced medial elastocalcinosis by high intake of vitamin K in rats. Blood. 2007 Apr 1;109(7):2823-31. 3. Tsujioka T, Miura Y, Otsuki T, et al. The mechanisms of vitamin K2-induced apoptosis of myeloma cells. Haematologica. 2006 May;91(5):613-9. 4. Geleijnse JM, Vermeer C, Grobbee DE, et al. Dietary intake of menaquinone is associated with a reduced risk of coronary heart disease: the Rotterdam Study. J Nutr. 2004 Nov;134(11):3100-5. ~ Be Well. ♥